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Weekly Briefing: July 31- August 4, 2023

Week of July 31, 2023

EFCG’s 2023 ESG Forum will be this November 2, 2023 in Washington, DC. This immersive day-long event will welcome industry-leading voices to provide profound insights into the world of Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG). Our expert-led sessions will explore innovative solutions to the most pressing ESG challenges, giving your business a competitive edge in this sustainability-focused era. Dive into insightful panel discussions, exclusive case studies, and impactful networking opportunities that can advance your approach to ESG integration.

U.S. Supreme Court Ruled to Continue Construction on Mountain Valley Gas Pipeline

  • The decision comes after a previous order by the Richmond appeals court to halt work on the $6.6 billion, 303-mile natural gas pipeline due to new lawsuits from opponents.

  • Project developer, Equitrans Midstream Corp., resumed forward construction, aiming for completion by the end of 2023.

  • The legal battle revolves around the inclusion of the Mountain Valley mandate in the federal debt ceiling law, ordering the pipeline's completion, leading to claims of jurisdictional issues and unconstitutionality.

  • Environmental groups and project opponents remain concerned about potential environmental impacts and construction risks in the region. The pipeline's future completion timeline remains uncertain pending further court decisions.


Extreme Heat Causes Workers to Protest Harsh Working Conditions in Temperatures Exceeding 100 Degrees Fahrenheit

  • New research reveals that extreme heat is affecting workers beyond traditionally affected industries like construction, causing reduced productivity in labor-intensive sectors such as factories, warehouses, restaurants, airlines, telecommunications, delivery services, and energy companies.

  • Heat exposure led to the loss of over 2.5 billion labor hours in 2021 across various U.S. sectors, resulting in an economic impact of around $100 billion. This cost is projected to rise to $500 billion annually by 2050.

  • Despite the economic impact and risks to worker health, there are currently no national regulations from OSHA to protect workers from extreme heat.

  • Employers in some regions are adapting to heat challenges, but concerns about increased costs for providing necessary protections, such as rest, water, shade breaks, and air-conditioning installations, remain a topic of discussion among business groups.


U.S. Considers Expanding Offshore Wind Development Amidst Rising Construction Costs

  • The U.S. Interior Department is currently evaluating the possibility of leasing new federal ocean tracts off the central Atlantic coast to facilitate the development of up to 8 GW of offshore wind energy.

  • In a much-anticipated move, the Interior Department has scheduled an auction for August 29 to sell the first large lease areas in the Gulf of Mexico for offshore wind development.

  • East Coast offshore wind projects are encountering cost-hike challenges, including lengthy permit delays, inflation effects, and supply chain issues. Developers have reported a steady rise in development costs, leading to canceled power agreements in Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

  • Despite the challenges and rising costs, industry players remain optimistic about the offshore wind sector's growth. The sector is still viewed as crucial for meeting decarbonization targets and addressing climate change, even as industry participants closely monitor cost escalations to ensure the feasibility of future projects.

July 31, 2023

TWM, Inc., a Missouri-based engineering and geospatial firm, has acquired Medders Surveying, a Tennessee-based land surveying firm. This move will allow TWM to provide enhanced services to existing and future clients in the rapidly growing Middle and Eastern Tennessee regions. The combination of expertise and resources from both companies will bring greater value and innovation to the region. With the addition of the new Athens location, TWM reinforces its commitment to establishing closer connections with local clients and communities. Robert DeConcini, President of TWM, Inc, was excited about the partnership, stating, "Their reputation for quality, integrity, and service aligns perfectly with our core values, and we're confident this integration will optimize our business operations, support our growth and expansion, and enhance the overall experience for our clients."


July 31, 2023

Integra Testing Services, LLC (Integra), an Ohio-based prominent provider of certified testing and balancing (TAB) services in the commercial HVAC market, has acquired Richard Flanders Enterprises, Inc. (Flanders), a Florida-based TAB, HVAC building systems commissioning, and sound and vibration testing service. The acquisition establishes a new division for Integra, known as Integra Testing Services - Florida (Integra Florida), and will add 20 employees and one office location to the company's existing footprint. Harlan Rosenberg, the owner of Flanders, will assume the role of General Manager for Integra Florida, stated, “I am happy to join the Integra family and encouraged by the opportunities Integra provides us to best serve our valued customers and the Florida market”.


August 1, 2023

Gannett Fleming Inc., a Pennsylvania-based AEC firm, has acquired DiGioia Gray & Associates, LLC (DiGioia Gray), a Pennsylvania--based a provider of power delivery, geosciences, geotechnical, and civil engineering solutions. The acquisition bolsters Gannett Fleming's capabilities in transmission and substation engineering. With over 120 skilled professionals, DiGioia Gray brings innovative technology-enabled solutions that support critical infrastructure projects. This strategic move aligns with the growing demand for sustainable infrastructure and renewable energy solutions, driving forward grid and energy resilience efforts.


August 1, 2023

Woolpert, an Ohio-based leading architecture, engineering, geospatial, and strategic consulting firm, has acquired Cooperative Strategies LLC, a California-based multidisciplinary education facility and program planning firm. Cooperative Strategies specializes in school facility management, assessments, educational program planning, and community engagement. With offices in Ohio, California, and Colorado, the firm serves schools, districts, and school systems across the nation. The acquisition will allow Woolpert to expand its expertise in education facility planning and strengthen its cloud-based solutions with the My Facility Informer (MFI) app, providing data collection and reporting capabilities for K-12 clients. The combination of Woolpert's and Cooperative Strategies' capabilities will enable them to enhance educational outcomes and offer a comprehensive range of services for schools and districts nationwide.


August 2, 2023

Atwell LLC, a Maryland-based full-service consulting, engineering and construction services firm, has acquired Bay Engineering, Inc., a Maryland-based engineering, surveying, and environmental firm. Specializing in land development services for both public and private clients in Central and Southern Maryland, Bay Engineering will bolster Atwell's position in the Mid-Atlantic region and add to their near 40 employees. This acquisition follows Atwell's acquisition of Ben Dyer Associates, Inc. in 2022. " We look forward to providing clients in the Mid-Atlantic with even more capabilities within the Atwell family." said Bill Anderson, Atwell’s Senior Vice President of Land Development in the U.S. East.

Jacobs teamed up with Pinellas County Government to host a STEAM event for students from local community centers in Pinellas County, FL. The project, called The Butterfly Effect program, is aimed at inspiring creativity and innovation in students, promoting sustainability in their decision-making. The event offered fun-filled learning activities to address complex global challenges, leaving a positive impact on the future leaders.


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